“Peaks of Power: God Hand”, by Paul Campbell, Jr. – Review

First, a public service announcement: This book is a LitRPG fantasy. The blurb doesn’t mention this niche genre, and has only a passing resemblance to the actual story being purchased. It doesn’t mention this is the second book of a series.

The story sets a reader down with no explanation of what has already happened, which in this case is somewhat important. Otherwise, the story initially makes very little sense. The first 70% of the book is spent killing boars in the forest, leveling party characters up to epic. The main Omega storyline is therefore rushed and incomplete. Writing is abysmal; characters are not developed, words are misapplied (e.g. amplitude vs. aptitude), the author doesn’t seem to know the difference between a pun and a metaphor. In short a good structural edit is sorely needed (i.e. more than a spellcheck).

Young gamers with high school reading skills might love this story, but old gamers want more for their $3.99. I recommend reading the samples before deciding to buy.

I rated “Peaks of Power: God Hand” a 2.5 on the FCP Review Standards scale.

Image by Parker_West from Pixabay

“Devour the Stars”, by R. Coots – Review

First and foremost, unless you really have a royal flush book on offer, an author probably shouldn’t be inviting reader comparisons to Game of Thrones or the politics of Dune in their blurb. While on the topic of the blurb; it bears only a faint resemblance to what is actually within the plot itself. R. Coots drops the reader right into the middle of a new universe, replete with invented terms, slang, and hidden powers without a life-raft. It took me the first 100 pages or so to get an understanding of what the rules were, and then mainly by inference. Not a lot of exposition or transitions to help explain complex plot settings. The most likeable (and developed) character is Syrus’ second, Quinn, whose character takes a turn for the worse at the very end.

Why did I persist? Because the story has legs, of course! R. Coots’ universe, the rules under which it operates, is unique and interesting. The book is technically well-written, professionally presented, and complete in itself. At $3.99 on Amazon, it is a good value.

I rated Devour the Stars as a solid 3.5 on the FCP Review Standards scale.

(Disclosure: I received a free copy through Veracious Readers Only!)

Image by Peter Fischer from Pixabay

“To Mars and Other Short Stories”, by Hana Aianhanma – Review

This is a short book of short stories for a reasonably short price. All of the stories are written by the author and prove to be interesting in spite of a few quirks. The book reads more like a post-copy-edit draft prior to being formatted rather than a finished work. And yet, it kept me interested and did entertain.

My favorite stories are “Method” and “El Viejito”, both of which appeal to my admittedly dark sense of humor. At $2.99 on Amazon.com it is priced close to being a good deal. Maybe Hana Aianhanma is on to something here; minimalist cover, minimum polish (things were spelled correctly), and good content but not a lot of it. Hmmmm.

I rate this 3 stars on the FCP Review Standards scale.

(Disclosure: I received a free copy through Veracious Readers Only!)

Image by Reinhart Zehetbauer from Pixabay